It’s no secret that social media outlets have been increasingly targeting conservative viewpoints in recent years. Facebook’s fact checkers are all too eager to hide information that does not coincide with their viewpoints–even when the information is true and credible. Two weeks ago, Facebook went arguably too far after it rejected one of Illinois Right to Life’s ads.
The IRL ad was created for the sole purpose of raising money for pregnant and parenting women in need. It was part of an online fundraising campaign for Project Love–a grant program which offers support to pregnant women and new mothers in a financial crisis by providing grants for rent, utility bills or other necessities.
Soon after putting the ad up on Facebook, Illinois Right to Life received a message from the big tech company stating that it was placing a temporary restriction on all social, political and election ads until after the election in order to “protect the integrity of the upcoming United States 2020 elections.” However, the ad that Illinois Right to Life put out explains nothing about the election and doesn’t even allude to any of the candidates. It is in no way political either. It is merely an ad created to broadcast the need for funding to support women in crisis pregnancies.
Censoring ads that might sway peoples’ political opinions is one thing, but directly targeting a group whose aim is to help women in crisis pregnancy is totally different. When reached out to about how this would potentially affect the integrity of the election, Facebook didn’t respond to the message.
Brittany Clingen Carl, Vice President of Illinois Right to Life spoke out on this recent matter, stating, “This censorship by Facebook is outrageous…Helping women facing crisis pregnancies isn’t a political issue. It isn’t even a social advocacy issue. It’s simply doing the right thing by helping women and their children when they desperately need support.” She explains how Illinois Right to Life, like most nonprofits, has had a rough time during 2020, and needs all the financial support they can get to continue to help women. When Facebook decides that an ad that has nothing to do with a political campaign needs to be taken down, it doesn’t do anything to help women or the American people in general.
Carl continues, “Illinois is currently headed into its second lockdown due to the coronavirus, and many people are facing immense financial hardships. Real women need help now, and they are the ones who are ultimately hurt by this ridiculous and arbitrary censorship.”